New Letters, the “Power” Issue (Vol. 77 No. 2/ 2011)

So it’s the end of the Thanksgiving weekend.  The leftover turkey and prime rib are still on the kitchen counter because there is simply no more room in the fridge.  Self is beginning to think about the morrow:  dropping son off at the airport, then seeing a dentist.  In between, she plans to stop by the post office and mail out a couple of stories.

To get her mind back into writing mode, self looks through her stack of literary journals.  She selects one journal at random:  New Letters.

She hasn’t read an issue in so long.  This one has the winners of their annual poetry and fiction prizes.

Self turns first to the winner in poetry:  a new name, someone named Josephine Yu.  Self deliberately avoids turning to the author’s bio because she doesn’t want to be sitting here, late at night on a Sunday, the kitchen still a mess, and read about a 27-year-old or even a 37-year-old whose luck has suddenly turned, whose years of apprenticeship to the writing muse have suddenly paid off, who has — oh, just quit it, self.

She turns to the first poem, “The Optimist’s Birthday,” and reads:

Tomorrow they begin the year when everything they’ve wanted
will finally happen.


Self really loves those words!

Here’s a little more:

They’re already forgetting
the accumulated grievances. Regret rises from them
like shower steam.

(Son just walked in the door)

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

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